The 10 best underground dance tracks of April
Given the sheer volume of new music that comes out every day, sifting through the filler to find gems for your record bag, USB stick or iTunes collection can be a real time drain. Luckily inthemix’s resident music nerd ANDREW WOWK is happy to carry some of the burden, by picking out the underground cuts from the last month that you need to hear. Get acquainted below.
#1 Talamanca System – My Past Is Your Future [International Feel]
The unlikely trio of Mark Barrott, Phillip Lauer and Gerd Janson return with another slice of downtempo Balearic house. All the necessary elements for a sunrise or sunset hands-in- the-air moment are there: sparkling synths, uplifting piano loops, warm vocal washes and low-slung percussion.
#2 Abstraxion & Kasper Bjørke – Nuit [Biologic Records]
A dark, stripped-down, trip with a strong nod to the early 2000’s heads-down progressive house vibe. A simple groove consisting of reverbed synth stabs occasionally gives way to big build ups of rolling snares and rave stabs before locking back into its heady rhythm.
#3 Sam Binga – BFT [Astrophonica]
Just one of several brilliant tracks on the Gradients compilation, BFT sees Sam Binga continue his mission to combine multiple threads of bass music into a melting pot of dancefloor destruction. And here’s a fun game for the trainspotters out there: see if you can pick every sample he uses.
#4 Cucumb45 – B.U.S.Y. [bbbbbb]
Determined not to let last year’s breakout hit ‘I Wanna Go Bang’ define him, Icelandic prodigy Bjarki has worked hard to showcase how diverse his palette really is. Under his new alias Cucumb45, he takes a classic funk breakbeat and intelligently layers a warm analogue bassline, other-worldly effects and random percussive hits over the top.
#5 Pola – Winds Of Vengeance [Finale Sessions]
A brilliant slice of chunky, rolling, acid-tinged progressive house. Tough, rolling percussion drives the groove while an incessant TB-303 bassline snakes around groovy chords and subtle vocal samples.
#6 Hans Berg – Dubbel Diagnos [Montage]
Funky, tripped-out peak time techno that expertly blends wobbly lead synth squelches with tight drums, heady atmospherics and a groovy bassline.
#7 Joe Goddard – Home (Morgan Geist Remix) [Greco-Roman]
Joe Goddard, founding member of Hot Chip, accompanied by Daniel Wilson on vocals, gets the remix treatment from New Jersey royalty and one half of Metro Area, Morgan Geist. With all those talents on the same track, you know it’s going to be good. If warm, disco-flavoured house is your jam, this is as good as it gets.
#8 Special Request – Redrum [Houndstooth]
Paul Woolford’s alias for all things ’90s rave (with a strong focus on breakbeat hardcore and jungle) takes a hard left turn into murky electro territory with ‘Redrum’. This is as legit as throwback love letter tracks get: punchy TR-808 drums, wobbly acid, and sci-fi flavours abound. It even has a bloody Speak-And- Spell in it.
#9 Tim Bourne – Orpheus Descending [Lost Language]
This is real trance. Nothing else needs to be said.
#10 Roosevelt – Colours (Prins Thomas Diskomiks Instrumental) [Greco-Roman]
Greco-Roman get their second guernsey this month, but when the quality of their releases have been this high, why shouldn’t they? Norwegian nu-disco ambassador Prins Thomas strips away the original’s vocals in favour of higher tempo drums, a bouncy acid bassline, re-worked lead synths and a cheeky piano breakdown.
Andrew Wowk is a Sydney-based writer and DJ. You can follow him on Twitter.
Article image: Dan Medhurst